This is for all of the conversations we never honestly had the chance to finish. This is for the unborn, the unfinished and incomplete parts of this world. May we continue inhaling all of next breaths and exhaling all of the previous ones. Let us witness and embrace this pattern of life itself. The conversation continues working from the heart.
“We must repeatedly test the limits of our story to prevent it from becoming solid.” -Sharon Salzberg
For you, FOR YOU: Please just know that I understand. I do not know how you came to be where you are right now, but I know that you are capable of going through this pain because I went through something like it once over and over again. Sometimes the worst thing that can happen to us is getting exactly what we want. I know you do not WANT to be here, and that’s probably a good thing. God please, do not give me what I want because it changes every minute, and I am not 26 anymore. What I really wanted at one time was more attention, more escape, and any fraction of space to create something, anything…What I really needed was a place to be free from myself and my version of loving anything, and as much as I wanted the pain to end, it did not. It sculpted me into this woman who gets off on good behavior, self love, and compassion for others. Right before we disappear completely we come back thick and heavy- hot breathed- sweaty and fleshy with the memory of all senses. You do not get to decide how all of this will go. This is not for you to figure out. Let it go. Let it be.
Run, run, run, run, run, run, run.
The “no time to slow down or we will fall behind!” mentality will kill us. We will literally run ourselves to death because gold stars are meaningless compared to that light you are so afraid to embrace within you. This light in each of us is priceless, and it never dies. So why are we so afraid of falling behind? If this light exists than how will falling behind mean that no one will notice us? To the exhausted runner – What could be worse than going unnoticed? Maybe this is exactly what she needs: to be alone with reality in its ugly, messy, unfairness. This is the freedom we’ve been waiting for, for ages and ages. Trust me when I say that this new idea about changing your life, is worth it. This new idea about ending that game is a place that is meant for you. All this time you’ve been running from something that was meant to find you anyway, and the only choice you need to make today is whether or not to pick up. I hope you choose life. I hope you choose to stop running, so you can start something new.
DEVOUR: The slower path is honest, but it is the most difficult to stick with for the long haul. Avoiding shiny objects and distractions along the way is key. Do not inhale people or experiences. Bask in the glory of life. We find this one day at a time in the steady paced lane. Slow and steady, nice and easy.
Q: Does the world really need ANOTHER Instagram Yoga account?
A: I think it comes down to dignity and making sure that whatever we choose to pursue reflects and honors our truth. ( the one we almost died trying to find.)
POPULARITY VS. REAL-LIFE
There are plenty of things more terrifying than having other people dislike us. The ones that dislike you will probably dislike you regardless of what you do, so stress less and let it go. Some days we will forget that we ever left age 12 and start crawling back again. Back into that oldest and most familiar trauma shelter. The one that held us when middle school bullies were on the prowl. The one that hid us from a world where we did not have a voice, a place in life for the unprepared 7th grader. POOF* we are not in 7th grade. We are here and now. We are wiser and louder. (Sigh of relief). Imagine a gratitude list that comes to life naturally until your head rises above water. We are breathing beyond this irrational and understandable social horror film in your mind. This is important because if being liked by other people is our only source of self-esteem in adult life, we are once again abandoning ourselves and our truths. We are not in 7th grade. We are learning to love ourselves and find room for love with others. Love is a learning process.
Our first year of recovery will be slow, but this is not another oppressive stake through our hearts. Try taking this as a pillow for tired eyes. We need rest to be useful. I know for sure that this will frustrate you, but take this as a gift. This is the rest you will need before the work begins. The greatest part of this year was learning how to follow through and be a beginner. Learning how to live as student of life here on planet earth is key. Learning how to not know what I am doing was one of the most difficult parts of my sobriety. Staying on the mat taught me to be patient.
I want you to win. Stand-up Women.
My friend Aya is a woman that I admire on this tour. Reflecting on the who I used to be and who I thought I should look like, act like, and be like, I realize that all of those goals were an insult to my truth. Trying to be “the cool girl” who doesn’t care, and knows everything about music, art, politics, love making and heartbreaking who says things like “how lovely, my darling” in her poetry (would not say that though), or maybe it was trying to be this chill, tough girl wearing stripes and looking great in jeans. ALWAYS chill. ALWAYS QUIET. Does not care. Does not help. Has secret plans that do not involve anyone in the room. No thank you. A role model and stand up woman to me today is fueled by love and compassion. She is soft and lives with intention while coming down to my apartment with her little bundled up French-Japanese daughter just to translate the directions on the rice cooker and make sure I had it under control. A cool woman to me is CARING and MINDFUL because she genuinely wants you to win. She knows she will not lose when you do, so she is not afraid of you. An intelligent woman to me finds English speaking yoga instructors during our first week living here in Tokyo because she knows that it is something she can do to help. She is Japanese, and we are in Japan. She is living her life in her light. She is working from the heart and living her purpose. This is a woman that I admire because she creates a safe place with understood, healthy boundaries in her wake. This is the healing light we are all capable of unfolding. This is compassion.
Q: What is my reason for writing this? Why am I doing this?
A: This is a healing place. This is working from the heart.
I think we can determine where the honey lies. Where the sweet spots of life really live because there is no time for anything less. We are allowed to love without letting others interrupt our joy. This is self love. This is the blanket that covers me always. We are allowed to let joy in when it comes our way, and we will pass this on if the opportunity presents itself. The conversation continues. ❤
We live in Japan now. Tokyo will be home for us for the next 5 months. Japan will be an 18 month journey.
Sometimes on tour I wonder what life is like on the other side in the normal world. After going back again and spending time over the past month, I am more distant than ever. How to relate to something so different when I live in Japan. What does that even mean? Life from before is an echo combined with sobriety. It is rich and full, but they are memories. They seem like fables, fiction, storylines from some place I used to know. The parts of life that I left behind continued moving forward, and I really wish I had a chance to see my best friend in Georgia. My heart breaks knowing that we did not try harder. I miss you so much. ❤
For more on the sobriety, yoga, and travel journey, please follow @the_oam on Instagram, and like The OAM facebook page for updates & inspiration. ❤